Different Types of Batteries and Their Uses

Different Types of Batteries and Their Uses

Written by Deepak Bhagat, In Technology, Published On
September 4, 2022

To a novice, a battery is a battery; it’s simply the powerhouse of the device. Despite this, there are various battery types, each of which is suited to a different application. For instance, your wall clock will need a very different battery to a measuring instrument that’s intended for use in hazardous environments. In the last decade, batteries have become one of the most important sources of energy; however, even before this, they were an integral feature of our existence. With this being said, electric vehicles, solar energy, laptops, tablets, and smartphones have only contributed to the advancement of batteries.

Different Types of Batteries and Their Uses

Different Types of Batteries and Their Uses

  • Lithium-Ion Batteries

The first type of battery we’re looking to explore is lithium-ion batteries, otherwise known as ATEX batteries. The emergence of these products ahs been impressive, with over half of the consumer market making use of lithium-ion batteries. In fact, they’re even used in the likes of cameras, cell phones, and laptops. This is down to their long life cycle, high specific energy, and high energy density. In addition to these advantages, lithium-ion batteries are also equipped with a variety of operating temperatures, as well as a slow self-discharge rate.

  • Nickel-Metal Hydride Batteries

Next up is nickel-metal hydride batteries, which are still somewhat new battery solutions, and they’re an extended version of nickel-hydrogen electrode batteries. These were used exclusively in aerospace applications, such as satellites; however, the extension of such has become much more versatile. As with all batteries, nickel-metal hydride batteries are comprised of positive and negative electrodes. The positive electrode is otherwise known as the Nickel Oxyhydroxide (NiOOH), and the negative electrode comes in the form of a metal alloy, in which hydrogen is stored in reverse.

While these batteries charge, metal alloys absorb hydrogen, which leads to the formation of the metal hydride. Meanwhile, during discharge, the metal hydride loses hydrogen. This battery solution boasts some advantages, including its higher specific energy and energy density. These are available in a commercial capacity.

  • Nickel-Cadmium Batteries

Following this, nickel-cadmium batteries are some of the oldest battery types that are still available today. As a result, it can be inferred that they’re very sturdy and reliable. A key advantage to Ni-Cd batteries is that they can manage high discharge rates, while also being operated in an array of temperatures. Their shelf-life is a long one; however, this also means that the cost is higher than lead-acid batteries, for example. Despite this, they are more affordable than other alkaline battery types.

The Nickel Oxyhydroxide (NiOOH) in these solutions acts as the cathode, while the Cadmium metal (Cd) is the anode. These products boast an array of advantages, including reliability, low maintenance, long life, flat discharge voltage, and low-temperature performances.

In spite of these advantages, one clear disadvantage is the memory effect, in which the batteries lose their capacity progressively during charging.

  • Lead-Acid Batteries

Last but not least is lead-acid batteries, which is the most widely used rechargeable battery. Even though they were developed more than 100 years ago, they still prove to be a success. There are various configuration options available when it comes to lead-acid batteries, and this is what makes them so suited to the automotive industry. Despite this, there are many other ways in which lead-acid batteries can be applied. These include emergency lighting systems, communication systems, electric/hybrid vehicles, emergency power, and energy storage.

This varied selection of applications comes from easy maintenance, low cost, differing shapes and sizes, and wide voltage ranges. All in all, they promise a solid performance for an affordable price and a versatile range of applications.

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